Now is the right time to become an American Federation of Musicians member. From ragtime to rap, from the early phonograph to today's digital recordings, the AFM has been there for its members. And now there are more benefits available to AFM members than ever before, including a multi-million dollar pension fund, excellent contract protection, instrument and travelers insurance, work referral programs and access to licensed booking agents to keep you working.

As an AFM member, you are part of a membership of more than 80,000 musicians. Experience has proven that collective activity on behalf of individuals with similar interests is the most effective way to achieve a goal. The AFM can negotiate agreements and administer contracts, procure valuable benefits and achieve legislative goals. A single musician has no such power.

The AFM has a proud history of managing change rather than being victimized by it. We find strength in adversity, and when the going gets tough, we get creative - all on your behalf.

Like the industry, the AFM is also changing and evolving, and its policies and programs will move in new directions dictated by its members. As a member, you will determine these directions through your interest and involvement. Your membership card will be your key to participation in governing your union, keeping it responsive to your needs and enabling it to serve you better. To become a member now, visit


Orchestra News

Orchestra Players Honored with Ford Musicians Awards

The League of American Orchestras has named the winners of its fourth annual Ford Musician Awards—and all five awardees are AFM members.

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra to Receive State Funding

In an effort to help Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (BSO) musicians and management reach a contract agreement, a bill providing an additional $3.2 million in state funding to the orchestra over the next two years is expected to become law by the end of May.

Chicago Symphony Strike Settled with New Contract

The Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s strike came to an end in late April, as musicians ratified a new five-year contract. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel stepped in to assist with negotiations, bringing both sides of the negotiating table to his office for a meeting. The strike was resolved two days later.

CIM Sees Increase in Minority Students

The Cleveland Institute of Music (CIM) has announced that its incoming Fall 2019 class of 188 students comprises 13% minority students.

Madison Symphony Hosts Event for LGBTQ Community

In April, the Madison Symphony Orchestra (MSO) presented an “Out at the Symphony” concert and after-party geared toward the LGTBQ community.

Rahm Emanuel Offers Assistance in Ending Chicago Symphony Strike

On April 24 Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel stepped forward with an offer to help the parties reach agreement and end the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO) strike, then in its seventh week.

Boise Philharmonic Joins AFM

At the end of March, musicians of the Boise Philharmonic voted to unionize, joining the AFM as part of Local 689 (Eugene, OR).

New York Philharmonic Fills Hall with Public Service Workers

Through its new “Phil the Hall” series, New York Philharmonic is offering special concert programs with $5 general admission tickets for emergency personnel and public service workers.

St. Louis Symphony Management Denies Librarian Inclusion in Bargaining Unit

On March 22, the librarians of the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra voted to join their colleagues in the orchestra as members of the bargaining unit represented by Local 2-197 (St. Louis, MO).

Baltimore Symphony to Have a Summer Season After All

Although Baltimore Symphony Musicians’ (BSM) leadership has had a break from the traditional collective bargaining process, they continued to advance their cause in other, less traditional ways.